Trade conditions improve in October

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Pretoria - Trade conditions improved marginally in October, the South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SACCI) said on Thursday.

"The recent improvement in trade conditions emerges from weak and volatile performances since the beginning of 2010," said SACCI, as it released its monthly Trade Conditions Survey.

The Trade Activity Index (TAI) improved to 52 points in October, while the index was only slightly above October's 2009 level of 51 points.

There was marginal change in the components of the TAI between September and October but at higher levels than in August 2010.

Supplier deliveries performed better at 54 in October than in the first half of 2010 when the index averaged at 46. The selling prices index was reasonably stable at 52, while the input price index decreased by one point to 56 in October.

Meanwhile, the Trade Expectations Index (TEI) remained unchanged at 60.

"The TEI was unchanged as expectations steadied further after moderating from the higher levels experienced at the start of 2010. Expectations for all the components of the TEI were largely maintained in October 2010. Inflationary expectations were raised slightly as both the selling and input price indices increased marginally," said SACCI.

SACCI's index on employment conditions in the trade environment remained unchanged at 45 in October. It has been in negative territory since May 2010, while the employment prospects index dipped by a further two points to 47 in October 2010. It entered negative territory for the first time in twelve months in September.